Whether you find yourself in Bastrop, Elgin, Smithville or one of our smaller communities, there’s always something fun going on in Bastrop County. The area’s best events bring live music, great food, and unique activities to town, year after year, so when you find one you love, you can make it an annual tradition.

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Event Series Event Series: 75th McDade Watermelon Festival 2023

75th McDade Watermelon Festival 2023

July 7

July 7 @ 8:00 pm - 11:00 pm

8:00pm - 11:00pm

Come on out to the community of McDade, Texas for the 75th Jubilee Celebration of the McDade Watermelon Festival. This charming community tradition is always the 2nd Saturday in July with a street dance, watermelon contests, parade, live music, riding mower rodeo, 5K run, barbecue cookoff and much more.

Friday, july 7

8 p.m. -11:30 p.m. Street Dance (Downtown)

Saturday, july 8  (2 locations – downtown & festival grounds)

Free entry to Watermelon Festival Grounds on Saturday. Beverages, food,  light up toys for the kiddos are available. Also on the festival grounds are a sandy activity area for enjoyment, water misting stations to help visitors cool off and picnic tables sitting under big oak trees.

  • 6:30 a.m. Sweatin’ Melons 5K Run/Walk (Downtown)
  • 7 a.m. Watermelon Weigh-in (Downtown). Locals compete for prize melon status. In 2020, the festival had a record weigh-in of 188lbs Grand Champion watermelon.
  • 8 a.m. – 1 p.m. Car Show (Festival Grounds)
  • 10 a.m. Parade (Downtown)
  • 10:30 a.m. Tournaments and Barbecue Cookoff (Festival grounds.) Concessions open, vendors, live music under the pavilion. Cornhole & washer pitching tournaments under the large oak shade trees; 1st ever BBQ Cook-Off (signup online); bingo, watermelon eating contest, seed spitting contest, and Riding Mower Rodeo, a fun-to-watch, timed obstacle course with participation with own riding lawn mower.
  • 5 p.m. Free Melon Feast for all with large slices!


McDade Watermelon Festival committee
View Organizer Website


Downtown McDade
565 Old Hwy 20
McDade, TX 78650 United States
+ Google Map
View Venue Website